FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nome, Alaska – A patient whose test resulted positive for COVID-19 on Thursday morning is connected to a cluster of confirmed cases in the region, which originated with a pair of travel-related cases announced last week. The patient agreed to allow NSHC to share their home community of Nome, where they are safely isolating.
NSHC notified the State of Alaska Section of Epidemiology and Public Health Nursing, which will conduct a further investigation and contact tracing.
Contact tracing is touted as one of the best tools in preventing the spread of the virus. Patients who test positive for the virus undergo an extensive interview with Public Health Nursing, which helps determine their potential infectious period and every contact and activity they’ve had during that period. People who have spent 15 minutes or more within 6 feet of a confirmed case during their infectious period will be considered close contacts and instructed to quarantine for a specified amount of time.
Close contacts should take quarantine instructions seriously. Contacts of close contacts are not required to quarantine but should be cautious and make sure to follow safety precautions, especially remembering to keep their distance from others.
If anyone starts feeling symptoms of COVID-19, including coughing, shortness of breath, fever, fatigue, loss of taste or smell, new onset diarrhea, or other cold symptoms, they should call their local clinic to arrange a test.